April 10th, 2006

Leo Power

Things about Parables

The folks and I got back from Indianapolis yesterday afternoon. Leo was pleased to see me (and had been upset that I'd left - he left 3 statements for me to that effect - yuk!) We had a nice time meeting up with Ed Beutner and Bernard Brandon Scott and another of the Westar Scholars, Perry something or other. (I'm bad with names.) Very nice fellow, Perry. Ed spoke at his church's Sunday School, so we went there and to the service afterwards. First time I'd been in a Methodist service since I was a kid and dad was a Methodist preacher. It was, um, formal. But the church was very friendly and is an open and affirming church. I love that in a church.

Anyhoo, during the Friday and Saturday workshops, I took notes. (On my PDA - heh heh - in between solitaire games. Hey, it keeps me awake and keeps me quiet.)

Found on a bumper sticker Brandon saw: "Due to budget cuts, the light at the end of the tunnel will be turned off."

Joke from Ed: "Did you hear the one about the dyslexic paranoid? He was always afraid he was following someone."

Some thoughts on parables:

"We don't learn about parables, we learn from them." - Brandon (IIRC)

The questions you should ask about parables: "How does it sound? How does it feel? How does it fit?" - Ed

Don't ask what a parable means - that's a Hellenistic way of looking at an aural story telling technique.

Parables are not for children.

(And after he said that, Brandon added that he thought at church "we should entertain the children and educate the adults" but we seem to do the reverse.)

Some other thoughts:

"God is nowhere absent and everywhere hidden." - Ed

"Constantine turned Christianity from a religion of what you do into a religion of what you believe." - Brandon

There were a few more notes that I'd taken, but I think those above are the cream of the crop. I liked what the fellows had to say. And it's neat hearing about parables from a strict scholar (Brandon) and from a poet who's also a scholar (Ed). Brandon admitted that it's hard for scholars to not look at a parable and try to figure out what it means. But for a poet like Ed, he sticks to how does it sound, how does it feel, and how does it fit.